What is WordPress Hosting? Definition and Top Providers

Updated Oct 14, 2022.

Discover everything you need to know about WordPress hosting to host your blog, online store, or website. Choose one of the best and fastest WordPress web hosting services in 2022.

SiteGround icon

SiteGround

Excellent WordPress hosting platform with reliable uptime and fast customer service for blogs and personal websites
Bluehost icon

Bluehost

Best all-rounded shared WordPress hosting service with affordable pricing plans for small websites and beginners
WP Engine icon

WP Engine

Managed WordPress hosting provider with secure and fast loading speeds designed for professional blogs
Kinsta icon

Kinsta

Scalable WordPress host with premium enterprise-grade features for scalable websites and multiple website owners
A2 Hosting Icon

A2 Hosting

Affordable cloud WordPress host with fast server speeds and strong uptime for small business sites with high traffic

Our work is supported by affiliate commissions.

Web hosting is essential for publishing your website or web page online. Creating a website goes beyond using a website builder and getting a domain name; you need a web host to take your business online.

The benefits of choosing the right web hosting type are improved site performance, SEO, high reliability and uptime, website security, and data management.

Many people tend to confuse WordPress and web hosting with each other. WordPress hosting is ideal for WordPress users. Using a WordPress host with your WP site optimizes your site’s performance. 

On the other hand, web hosting is a general term that refers to all hosting service types that involve renting a portion of a company’s server space for storing the site’s files and gaining visibility on the internet. 

This article provides a comprehensive guide on WordPress hosting, including the different types, benefits, and best hosting providers for your business website. 

Let’s get started.

What is WordPress Hosting? Quick Definition

WordPress hosting refers to a web host type that enhances the performance and security of WordPress websites. It covers WordPress-specific features such as a one-click WordPress installer, which makes it easy for new users to integrate and adapt quickly to WordPress sites. 

Web hosting services offer automatic WordPress updates on their software when required to make the user experience more favorable.

Choosing a WordPress hosting provider opens you to a load of relevant tools and services tailored to help you navigate your way across WordPress sites. It can be managed or shared hosting, depending on which WordPress hosting type you choose. 

Many WordPress hosting plans offers you access to a wide range of WordPress hosting services, such as one-click WordPress installation, customer support, automatic software updates, and a wide range of other features. 

WordPress Usage Statistics
Source: WebsiteSetup

Do I Need WordPress Hosting to Run WordPress?

The standout benefit of sticking with WordPress hosting vs. other hosting types is its WordPress-optimized servers. However, you do not need a WordPress host to run WordPress. Many web hosting companies can run WordPress effectively. 

As long as you have a PHP version host of 5.2.4 or higher or a MySQL version of 5.0.15 or higher, you would be able to run WordPress with or without a WordPress host. WordPress provides room for web hosts that meets its minimum requirements to access WordPress.  

Although all WordPress hosts have the same unequivocal access to WordPress, they vary in their operation and the services it provides to their users, distinguishing them from each other. 

So if your specification is the best host optimized for WordPress that offers you features beyond merely hosting a WordPress site, then you need to have your eyes on a quality WordPress host that can deliver on your specific needs. 

WordPress website owners record a better overall satisfaction rate with WordPress-optimized hosts when measured against several customer satisfaction metrics. 

What is Shared WordPress Hosting?

Shared WordPress hosting is one of the two types of WordPress hosting and the cheaper WordPress hosting option available. It allows your site to share a server with multiple WordPress sites without affecting your site's optimized performance. 

You get access to a one-click WordPress installer and a cPanel feature which provides you access to a one-click WordPress installer. 

The distinguishing feature of shared WordPress hosting, as opposed to other shared hosting web services, is that it goes a step further in providing users with the option of pre-installing WordPress. 

Shared WordPress hosts offer a wide range of WordPress-specific features, from automatic updates to upgrading your WordPress theme, among other features, but it depends on which host you decide to choose. 

You could take advantage of the discount many shared WordPress hosts offer on the first cycle of your WordPress hosting plan, although it reverts to normal after you have run the project out. 

What is Managed WordPress Hosting?

Managed WordPress hosting is the other type of WordPress hosting. It is a sharp upgrade to shared WordPress hosting as it offers all and more features that you cannot get from shared WordPress hosting. 

With managed WordPress hosts offering better hardware and server resources, its users are guaranteed a much faster speed on their WordPress sites for better performance.

Server-side caching is another of the advantages that managed WordPress hosting has going for it. Catching requires you to have a plugin for it to run effectively. Still, with managed WordPress hosting, you need little or no plugin or effort to enjoy this feature. 

Managed WordPress hosting providers offer a secure platform for its users with WordPress-specific firewalls and periodic malware, and intrusion detection scans to ensure your WordPress website is secure. 

You get access to a staging site if you opt for a managed WordPress web hosting provider to serve as a testing ground for changes on your sites and monitor their impact before incorporating them into your WordPress site. 

With all its juicy benefits, managed WordPress hosting is generally more expensive than shared WordPress hosting. However, its extensive features can be your money's worth if you are in dire need of them. 

Benefits of WordPress Hosting

WordPress hosting is a welcome development to assist you in building and managing your WordPress sites. It offers a wide range of easy-to-use features to make your experience easy on the platform.

Here are some of the WordPress hosting benefits you stand to gain from choosing WordPress hosting for your WordPress sites.

  • Improved Security: Most WordPress hosting plans come with a secure security system tailored to protect your WordPress site against WordPress-specific threats that often disrupt your site's optimal functionality. Your site is guaranteed to be in the safest and most secure hands with an around-the-clock security team dedicated to dealing with your security issues. 
  • Easy to Add SSL Certificates: One of the numerous benefits your WordPress hosting plan will get you from your hosting provider is the ability to add an SSL certificate to your site at zero cost. 
  • Automatic Updates: Opting for one of the many WordPress hosting providers provides you access to automatic updates and upgrades. You get security packages to incorporate into your website one server at a time. 
  • Better Plugin Function: Subscribing to any managed WordPress hosting plan requires minimal plugins as the host will optimize performance, security, and caching. WordPress-hosted sites work with the most popular plugins, which are optimized and get updated automatically. 
  • Quick Set-Up: Site owners, via a WordPress host, get their sites up and running efficiently and quickly due to their pre-configured features and technologies. With the WordPress dedicated servers, you are guaranteed a faster loading time and optimal site performance from when your site is launched. 
  • Support: WordPress hosting allows you access to dedicated customer support and services on the desk to resolve your WordPress issues. 

Who Should Use WordPress Hosting?

WordPress-built Websites

If you fall under the category of users that set up their websites with WordPress, you enjoy many benefits of using WordPress hosting. Although you do not need to combine WordPress hosting with your already created WordPress site, the duo's combo impact is powerful. 

WordPress hosting integrates seamlessly with sites created on WordPress, focusing on improving the site's security and functionality while offering automatic updates where available. 

Beginners with No Prior Web Hosting Experience

WordPress hosting provides an effective management plan where you have no hand in how you run WordPress. You get access to WordPress experts on hand to assist also in maintaining your website. 

So, in a nutshell, WordPress hosting can even work for users with limited time on their hands or no prior experience in running a website. 

Should I Choose Shared or Managed WordPress Hosting?

The debate between shared hosting vs. managed WordPress hosting, which is the better choice for hosting your website, depends on your website needs. 

Usage

The type of WordPress hosting suitable for you depends on your budgetary requirements and the site's intended use and function. 

Shared WordPress hosting plans are suitable for beginners with a mere budget. They offer the essential features to help you build and manage your website efficiently. 

Managed WordPress hosting plans are ideal for websites with high user engagement. This hosting plan offers you a dedicated server for high performance compared to when you share a web server.

Pricing

This classification considers price and value for money. Shared WordPress hosting plans are cheaper and affordable for beginners for the services they seek. 

Opting for a managed WordPress hosting plan would ultimately translate to you having to pay more, but what you spend in money, you stand to gain with time as you do not have an active hand in managing the performance of your website. 

Support

The beginning phase is often the most overwhelming stage for a first-time WordPress website builder. You have to deal with configuring caching and keeping track of updates on your site. 

With managed WordPress hosting plans, intending WordPress site owners do not have to deal with the overwhelming process as it has a content management system (CMS) for managing its activities. Shared web hosting plans do not offer as much support for users.

Managed Hosting VS Shared Hosting
Source: DreamHost

1. SiteGround

Best Overall WordPress Web Hosting Services

SiteGround- 18 years Ultrafast WordPress Hosting

Siteground is one of the best WordPress web hosting services with reliable uptime and fast customer service founded in 2004 in Bulgaria with more than 2 million domains worldwide.

Best Features

  • Support: SiteGround offers all three customer support options in the phone, live chat, and email ticketing options, so you are always poised to get a response as they all run around the clock.
  • Security: This WordPress host runs on WordPress advanced security with free encrypted SSL certificates, spam protection, and a web application firewall to shore up the security of your website.
  • Pricing: SiteGround web hosting plans start from the Startup plan at $2.99/month but renew at $14.99, the GrowBig plan at $4.99/month but renewal at $24.99, and the GoGeek plan at $7.99/month and renewal at $39.99. 

Pros

  • Improved server restore technology
  • Proactive server monitoring
  • Data centers on three continents
  • Secure account isolation on shared servers
  • Free domain name

Cons

  • Web hosting space cap of 10GB – 30GB
  • Requirement of a higher plan for managed hosting features
  • High renewal costs

2. Bluehost

Best All-Rounded WordPress Hosting Service for Small Websites

Bluehost - The best place to WordPress

Bluehost is one of the best web hosting providers founded in 2003 that serves a global audience with its data center located in the United States. 

Best Features

  • Support: Bluehost offers extensive support to its customers. You can choose between its live chat, phone, and email ticketing system. When you create a web hosting account, Bluehost automatically helps install WordPress on your account.  
  • Security: A free SSL certificate and CDN come with the basic Bluehost plan, although higher programs offer stricter security measures such as spam experts add-on, domain privacy protection, and server backups. 
  • Pricing: Bluehost shared hosting plans include the basic web hosting plan at $2.75 per month, the plus and choice plus plans at $5.45 per month, and the pro plan at $13.95 per month. Its managed WordPress plans start at $19.95 per month. 

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • High-performance servers 
  • Great security features
  • Quick response from support
  • 30-Days money back guarantee 

Cons

  • One data center located in the U.S
  • No uptime guarantee

3. WP Engine

Best Managed WordPress Hosting Service

WP Engine Best for E-Commerce and Email Marketing

WP Engine, founded in 2010, is one of the fastest web hosting services and an optimized WordPress host with tailored features to help users use its managed hosting plans. 

Best Features

  • Security: You get access to a free SSL certificate to shore up the security of your website with WP Engine, as well as adequate support to set up staging areas to test your website's performance. 
  • Support: WP Engine offers help to its customers through several platforms. You can choose between phone, email, and live chat options, which all run 24/7.
  • Pricing: WP Engine offers plans from its cheapest startup plan of $23 per month to its scale plan of $218 per month. 

Pros

  • 60-day free trial
  • No long-term commitment required
  • Excellent support response times
  • Free data backup and restore
  • Distinct staging area for testing plugins and themes

Cons

  • Expensive plans compared to other options
  • Specific plugins and themes are not available 

4. Kinsta

Best Scalable Web Host for Fast-Growing Businesses

Kinsta - WordPress hosting for sites that mean business

Kinsta hosting is a WordPress web hosting service founded in 2013 with plans to be distinct and a formidable alternative to the already long list of hosting providers available. 

Due to its premium enterprise-level web hosting features and high performance, Kinsta is one of the most reliable in the WordPress hosting industry, used by over 24,600+ companies.

Best Features

  • Security: Kinsta offers its users enterprise-grade security features and removes all existing malware programs found for new uses, in addition to DDoS protection and two-factor authentication. 
  • Customer Support: This WordPress host offers the live chat feature, among others, to help their users navigate their way across their platform. 
  • Pricing: The pricing of Kinsta’s web hosting plans ranges from $35.00 per month for starters to $1,650 per month for its Enterprise 4 plan. 

Pros

  • Amazing technical support
  • Simple to set up and migrate
  • A significant spike in traffic
  • Optimized for an eCommerce site
  • 30-day money-back guarantee 

Cons

  • No email hosting support
  • No mobile support

5. A2 Hosting

Best VPS and Cloud WordPress Hosting Company

A2 Hosting - A Cloud Hosting Company

A2 Hosting is a cloud web hosting company based in Michigan, USA, founded in 2001 that delivers high cloud hosting speeds and stable uptime. 

Best Features

  • Security: A2 Hosting offers many security features, from free SSL certificates and SSH access to two-factor authentication, spam filtering, and proactive HackScan protection to avoid and deal with imminent threats. 
  • Customer Support: This VPS hosting option offers customer support to its users via its Guru Crew support, which is available 24/7 all year long to deal with all your issues. 
  • Pricing: A2 Hosting offers an initial startup shared plan for $2.99/month and rises to $10.99 monthly for renewal. Its most expensive plan is its dedicated servers plan which is initially worth $105.99 but rises to $199.99 on revival. 

Pros

  • Unlimited storage
  • Unlimited data transfer
  • Unlimited websites
  • Anytime money back guarantee
  • Optimized for WordPress, Drupal, and PrestaShop

Cons

  • A2 Hosting requires the swift or turbo hosting plan to function optimally 
  • Turbo Server is available only on a more expensive hosting plan
Best Overall

SiteGround

Excellent WordPress hosting platform with reliable uptime and fast customer service for blogs and personal websites
Best for Small Websites

Bluehost

Best all-rounded shared WordPress hosting service with affordable pricing plans for small websites and beginners
Best for Managed WordPress Hosting

WP Engine

Managed WordPress hosting provider with secure and fast loading speeds designed for professional blogs
Best for Fast-Growing Businesses

Kinsta

Scalable WordPress host with premium enterprise-grade features for scalable websites and multiple website owners
Best for Cloud Hosting

A2 Hosting

Affordable cloud WordPress host with fast server speeds and strong uptime for small business sites with high traffic

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Martin Luenendonk

Editor at FounderJar

Martin loves entrepreneurship and has helped dozens of entrepreneurs by validating the business idea, finding scalable customer acquisition channels, and building a data-driven organization. During his time working in investment banking, tech startups, and industry-leading companies he gained extensive knowledge in using different software tools to optimize business processes.

This insights and his love for researching SaaS products enables him to provide in-depth, fact-based software reviews to enable software buyers make better decisions.